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Set up new water tribunal, demands Punjab

 The Punjab government on Saturday pleaded for setting up of a new water tribunal for assessment of situation of the river water in the state.

Set up new water tribunal, demands Punjab

Putting forth the stand of state during meeting of Northern Zonal Council chaired by Union Home Minister Amit Shah here, Punjab Cabinet Minister Harjot Singh Bains, while opposing issue of the Satluj Yamuna Link (SYL) canal, unequivocally said that Punjab does not have even a single drop of water to share with other states.

He said the groundwater level in the state is already depleting and most of the blocks are in dark zone. Bains said the assessment of river water sharing made by tribunals in the past was obsolete now in current scenario

Bains on behalf of Punjab demanded water from Haryana from the Yamuna citing Indus commission report of 1972 and said a fresh tribunal must be constituted to assess the current water situation in the state.

He said it will clear the picture and allow the judicious use of water in the state. The minister said that it is need of hour to ensure that Punjab's water was not diverted to any other state through the SYL or any other mean.

Taking part in deliberations, Finance Minister Harpal Cheema opposed any change in the nature and character of Panjab University in Chandigarh.

Cheema stated that Panjab University was established in Lahore and after partition it was shifted to Hoshiarpur and then to Chandigarh.

He said any move of government of India to convert Panjab University into a central university will be opposed tooth and nail. He categorically said the university has an emotional place in the hearts of the people of Punjab on account of historical, cultural and provincial reasons.

The Ministers also opposed the discontinuation of a member from Punjab in the BBMB saying that it was a not at all acceptable.

They said that no tempering should be made in existing provisions of the BBMB. Both the ministers said any such move of removing member from state was unwarranted and undesirable.

Both Cheema and Bains also opposed the proposal of the Rajasthan and Haryana governments to fully fill the Pong and Bhakra Dam.

They said that it results in floods in Punjab which brings a huge loss of life and property in state. They said that it is practically not feasible.

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